Impress Your Crowd with This Versatile & Super Easy Pesto

When I see pesto on a menu I don’t think to myself, “Yay! Pesto! I know that’s what I want!” But over the years I have tweaked a few pesto recipes of my own that are actually worth screaming for. They impress a crowd, can do amazing things (are you a vegetable dip or a pasta sauce?  I am whatever you want me to be), and can be whipped up in, I don’t know, five to ten minutes?

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Looking into the blender with kale, peppercorns, pink salt, EVOO, water, lemon and zest.  I was just waiting to add the walnuts.  Isn’t it pretty?

Kale Pesto
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dip/Sauce
Ingredients
  • 5 oz. baby kale
  • 1½ cups toasted walnuts (I used red walnuts and toasted them in the oven)
  • ¾ cup EVOO
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese
  • Juice and zest of an entire large lemon, you may want to use two
  • S+P to taste
Instructions
  1. Blend everything together in your vitamix or strong blender. I added a few tablespoons of water to get the "dip" consistency I like. Remember if you are adding to hot pasta it will become creamy with the heat as well.
  2. Refrigerate any leftovers.

 

This is my basic go to recipe but you can literally play with it in so many ways.  Try a different green/nut/cheese combo.  Spinach, almond, manchego maybe?  Throw in some herbs if you have them.  You really can’t go wrong.  Serve cold with fresh veggies and these amazing crackers as a tasty dip at your next get together or pour over hot zucchini pasta and watch it melt into a silky sauce.

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My girlfriend Joellen does a couple variations and shared some tips with me.  She used coconut oil as the “fat” in her current pesto, made a big batch and put it in tupperware in the freezer.  So anytime she wants a small amount, she reaches into her freezer and scoops it right out!  The coconut oil gives it the consistency of ice cream when frozen.  How convenient is that?!  She also likes to keep hers non dairy so she throws in nutritional yeast instead of cheese.  We talked about pouring leftovers into an ice tray as well so anytime you need a small amount you have a cube waiting for you.

So, for real, limitless pesto ideas for life.  Share yours with us here or on social media, we love to see what you’re up to!

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